Barack Obama attended Trump’s inauguration
* As he continues to spread baseless claims that election had widespread fraud
* Democrats still working to determine the timeline for Trump’s potential impeachment
* Trump should resign immediately — former Secretary of State Colin Powell
The Guardian and USA Today
Donald Trump has just announced that he will not be attending Joe Biden’s inauguration on January 20, just a day after acknowledging he will soon be leaving office.
“To all of those who have asked, I will not be going to the Inauguration on January 20th,” Trump said in a new tweet.
It is considered a hallmark of the peaceful transfer of power for the outgoing presidents to attend the inaugurations of their successors, even when they have just lost reelection.
But there was widespread speculation that Trump would not attend Biden’s inauguration, as he continued to spread baseless claims that the president-elect had secured victory through widespread fraud.
In the video he posted to Twitter last night, Trump said, “Congress has certified the results. A new administration will be inaugurated on January 20. My focus now turns to ensuring a smooth, orderly and seamless transition of power.”
Many would consider Trump attending Biden’s inauguration to be a part of that “smooth, orderly and seamless transition of power,” but the president apparently does not.
Donald Trump’s absence from Joe Biden’s inauguration will make him the first outgoing president not to attend his successor’s inauguration since 1869.
Interestingly, the last president not to attend his successor’s inauguration — Andrew Johnson — was also impeached by the House but acquitted by the Senate.
The only other two presidents to skip their successors’ inaugurations were John Adams in 1801 and John Quincy Adams in 1829.
Meanwhile, Katherine Clark, the assistant House speaker, clarified that Democrats are still working to determine the timeline for Trump’s potential impeachment.
“We face obstruction and attempts to delay us by the GOP defenders, but we‘re resolute. We will act to protect the American people,” Clark said.
Former Secretary of State Colin Powell said President Trump should resign immediately in the wake of Wednesday’s riot at the US Capitol.
“I wish he would just do what Nixon did and that’s step down,” Powell said in an interview on NBC.
Powell said impeachment — a step House Democrats are preparing for as early as next week — is too time consuming.
“Somebody ought to go up there and tell him, ‘It’s over. Plane’s waiting for you. You’re out,’” Powell said.
Powell said that would also help “cut the guts out from underneath” the Trump allies who are seeking to overturn the results of the Nov. 3 election, which President-elect Joe Biden won.
Trump has falsely claimed the election was rigged and rife with fraud, allegations that have been repeatedly debunked and rejected by courts, election officials and state leaders.
On Wednesday, as Congress was preparing to formally recognize Biden’s win, Trump encouraged a group of his supporters to march to the Capitol.
They were able to breach security, ransack the building and temporarily halt the Electoral College count. An officer with the U.S. Capitol Police was among those who died in the wake of the attack.
“What he is responsible for is one of the most disgusting things I’ve ever seen,” Powell, a retired four-star general, said of Trump. “He should be totally ashamed of himself, and he should take that shame and turn it into a resignation as quickly as possible.”
Powell called those who stormed the Capitol “idiots” and said Trump “encouraged them every step of the way.”
He said Vice-president Mike Pence and other current government officials can easily take over for the remaining days of Trump’s term on Jan. 20.
Powell also expressed shock at the poor planning ahead of Wednesday’s events, saying there was not a clear line of command and the delay in deploying the National Guard was inexplicable.
“I don’t know what they were waiting for,” he said.